Main meanings of pace in English

: pace1pace2PACE3


Pronunciation /peɪs/

See synonyms for pace

Translate pace into Spanish


  • 1A single step taken when walking or running.

    ‘Kirov stepped back a pace’
    • ‘He always did that when we said goodbye: he'd walk a few paces, turn and wave.’
    • ‘Consider him: at slow or fast-medium, his approach never varied; two short walking paces, six running strides and a four-foot leap.’
    • ‘Eetu walked a few paces before stopping and turning to me.’
    • ‘Nyte glanced at the floor and stepped back a pace, hiding behind the young lady.’
    • ‘We walked a few paces up and stood in the doorway of a biker bar.’
    • ‘He paused for a moment, walked a few paces and then came back.’
    • ‘To an extent, I'm working blind, and have to step back several paces to check I've got everything that ought to be got.’
    • ‘Something caught my attention, I forget what it was, so I did a double take and stepped back a few paces to get a better look.’
    • ‘Tanis immediately stepped backward a pace to put distance between him and the bears.’
    • ‘She let go and the enforcer stumbled back a few paces, getting some distance from her.’
    • ‘We walked a few paces before she turned to me, confused.’
    • ‘As soon as his ropes fell loose, he jumped up and away from them, walked a few paces and stopping to rub his arms and wrists where the ropes had been.’
    • ‘We eased our way through the crowd and into the park which after only a few paces seemed many leagues distant from the City surrounding it.’
    • ‘I can even walk more than ten paces in three inch heels now, too!’
    • ‘I listened, and could hear him walk a good twenty paces down a concrete corridor.’
    • ‘‘Just walk about two dozen paces to the front, and then face the left,’ he explained.’
    • ‘Walk fifteen paces, must be fifteen exactly, then hop three times forwards and one hop back.’
    • ‘Pick up your keyboard and walk 10 paces back.’
    • ‘Trying to stand on shaking legs, she managed to get up and walk two paces, but then she collapsed into an undignified heap.’
    • ‘Jady had only moved nearly ten paces before the girl darted out in front of Jady.’
    step, stride, footstep
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1A unit of length representing the distance between two successive steps in walking.
      ‘her eyes could size up a lad's wallet at fifty paces’
      • ‘They broke apart, and Quin glared across the two paces or so of distance between him and his foe, waiting patiently for the next onslaught.’
      • ‘A lightly armed guard followed her at a distance of nearly ten paces.’
      • ‘He spied the jaguar disappear into the trees and then Pockets sent the sentry unit a few paces before him as he followed.’
      • ‘The poor runner has covered a distance of 100 paces before the good runner sets off in pursuit.’
      • ‘Unbelievably large, it must have measured at least over a hundred paces in length and width.’
      • ‘Our regiment then retreated, about fifty paces, I think, and there we halted just behind the brow of a hill.’
      • ‘They had only gone about fifty paces, tripping over rocks and disturbing dust, when the direction of the sound changed.’
      • ‘We hauled rock-hard water from the well about fifty paces out the front of the house.’
      • ‘Enhance my vision telescopically, allowing me to read fine print from the far side of the restaurant, or see an ant at fifty paces.’
      • ‘Naoise strode exactly twenty paces away, and turned to face Danovin, falling into the first fighting stance Dendria had taught him.’
      • ‘Count eight paces from the high chair to the flashy space at the studio's end.’
      • ‘But within twenty paces he was walking across featureless grass.’
      • ‘Chaim walked a few hundred paces away until he came to a tree.’
      • ‘Carl walked the thirteen paces towards the inferno then stopped.’
      • ‘Sighing, the man walked the four paces that the queue had advanced.’
      • ‘Two paces away stood the lift doors to the shuttle bay.’
      • ‘Every twenty or so paces, there appeared a door to one side, a barred door made of iron, thick and solid.’
      • ‘She watched shadowy footsteps catch up and go in front, then resumed her earlier speed some five paces behind.’
      • ‘Wordlessly, Joe turned and walked a few paces, setting the distance for the gunfight.’
      • ‘She stepped forward into a square room with no windows, perhaps ten paces across.’
    2. 1.2A gait of a horse or other animal, especially one of the recognized trained gaits of a horse.
      ‘Feeling this error, the rider may use his or her legs to cue the horse to round out his back and slow his pace, but the horse assumes the rider still wants to go faster.’
      • ‘When your horse learns an even pace, he will feel comfortable and confidant when he uses it in a ride and it will become automatic for him and easy for you, too.’
      • ‘Then came the horses and riders, cantering at a stately pace, clearly restrained by some mysterious hunt etiquette.’
      • ‘Will picked a quick pace for the horses, and started to gallop off.’
      • ‘The three riders rounded the bend, as Garon's front entrance came into view the trio slowed down the pace of their horses and rode alongside each other.’
      • ‘She feared at any moment that the animal would quicken its pace and send her flying to the ground, but voiced neither her concerns nor her discomfort.’
      • ‘He picked up the pace of his horse, glanced around once more, making sure that only ghosts and not Federal soldiers surrounded him.’
      • ‘Harp did not let the horse slow its pace until well near nightfall.’
      • ‘The little white northern horse picked up his pace, anticipating a rubbing down, and a sweet bunch of carrots.’
      • ‘Angel attempted to slow the steed to an easier pace, but the animal refused.’
      • ‘I quickened the pace of my horse so that I was level with Jason.’
      • ‘Billy and White Eagle drove their horses at a furious pace as they hoped to escape Slade's wrath.’
      • ‘Since they were in no hurry, Bell and Kevin trained the others at a slower pace than Kevin trained at.’
      • ‘The rest of the ride was at a slow pace so the horses would not get overheated.’
      • ‘Boreal's trainer Peter Schiergen also said that the pace had not suited his horse.’
      • ‘Hoss urged the horse to a faster pace to overtake the lead animal, and slow the little group down.’
      • ‘The pace quickened to a canter as the trail began to open and they rode into a valley.’
      • ‘Heiferman began at the pace of a runaway horse, and his frenzy only increased as he continued.’
      • ‘They rode at a steady pace, their horses' clip-clop sounds in cadence with each other.’
      • ‘The horses galloped at an astonishing pace, racing for the edge of the forest, through the Hollow Mists of Leba, desperate to escape.’
    3. 1.3 literary mass noun A person's manner of walking or running.
      ‘I steal with quiet pace’
      • ‘She moaned some lame excuse to whoever she was talking with and walked with shaken pace towards the quiet parts of the flat.’
      • ‘Their verse has not the rushing speed that could pace that tempest, it has not the teeming life that would pacify the wood.’
      gait, stride, walk, tread, march
      View synonyms
  • 2mass noun Speed in walking, running, or moving.

    ‘most traffic moved at the pace of the riverboat’
    • ‘he's an aggressive player with plenty of pace’
    • ‘the ring road allows traffic to flow at a remarkably fast pace’
    • ‘Leanne attempted running down the hallway but found she was out of breath easily, so she settled on walking her fastest pace.’
    • ‘My confidence was returning despite his nonchalance and I sped my pace up to walk beside him.’
    • ‘You could start off doing eight three-minute runs at a very fast pace, with one minute's brisk walk in between each.’
    • ‘Instead, try walking at a pace fast enough to speed up your breathing somewhat but slow enough to carry on a conversation.’
    • ‘Nitros then began to walk at a faster pace and Speed followed him closely.’
    • ‘We speeded up our pace, so fast it looked like we were racing each other.’
    • ‘Aroura didn't like the look of them and sped up her pace with larger, faster steps.’
    • ‘I lightly walk along and walk at a semi fast pace.’
    • ‘So we started to walk at a very fast pace down the hall.’
    • ‘She said in the sweetest tone she could find, then started walking a a slightly faster pace so he couldn't hook arms with her again.’
    • ‘This section of town was busier than the previous sections, with people walking every which way at an extremely fast pace.’
    • ‘The under-growth was very light, and the pines did not grow close together, so we were able to walk at a fairly fast pace.’
    • ‘This time, she walked at an extremely fast pace to see if Erik could keep up.’
    • ‘She looked back at him and saw that he was walking away in a fast, silent pace.’
    • ‘The castle was no more than a good two hour's walk now, if he kept fast pace and didn't stop.’
    • ‘A possessor of great pace, power and strength, he also has the necessary wit and guile to progress to the very top of his sport.’
    • ‘While ordinary ride-on mowers don't go much faster than walking pace, some versions are clearly anything but pedestrian.’
    • ‘The constant fast pace of football is reduced to long pauses to determine if a player had two feet in-bounds.’
    • ‘Except for a few meandering authorial digressions, the novel maintains a cracking pace from start to finish.’
    • ‘The elevator proceeded at a snail's pace, finally reaching the 40th floor.’
    speed, rate, swiftness, quickness, rapidity, velocity, tempo, momentum
    View synonyms
    1. 2.1The speed or rate at which something happens or develops.
      ‘the industrial boom gathered pace’
      • ‘the story rips along at a cracking pace’
      • ‘Slow fades and dissolve shots are also used to complement the film's unhurried, unforced pace.’
      • ‘Because of its unhurried pace, the Adagio is sometimes played at memorial services.’
      • ‘High-end computers these days consume more and more power, and the power supply industry continues to release new units at a blazing pace.’
      • ‘Two factors quickened the pace of change over the course of American history.’
      • ‘The whole production, in fact, is even more delightful than I remembered it, everything moving with even greater pace and sparkle.’
      • ‘The rapid pace of development and the increasing population in Jakarta have been taking a toll on the land.’
      • ‘In his exploration of the evolution of Calgary, entitled Birth of a Metropolis, Lougheed underscores the city's rapid pace of development.’
      • ‘For newcomers lacking experience with Shanghai's language, culture, daily life and fast pace, the possibility of trouble was high.’
      • ‘But it looks as if the second half of next year will see this growth pace slowing markedly.’
      • ‘The movie generally maintains this frenetic pace, sometimes so fast it's like you are looking at a reel of photographic negatives.’
      • ‘The universe then settled into a more leisurely pace of expansion over the past 13.7 billion years or so.’
      • ‘As the jubilee celebrations gathered pace only the changeable weather threatened to dampen spirits.’
      • ‘The momentum gathered pace late on as the Dow Jones Industrial Average moved ahead despite three straight days of gains on Wall Street.’
      • ‘It was disbanded by 1919, but as the Second World War gathered pace, the need for extra hands on the land increased.’
      • ‘From 20 yards, his left-foot shot gathered pace as it swerved and rose into the far corner of the net.’
      • ‘Zalm said that if Bulgaria's economy continues to develop at this pace, interest in it among Dutch people would continue to grow.’
      • ‘The adjustment will take time and effort but MacDougall believes his improvement has gathered pace in the past fortnight, since he made his first start.’
      • ‘With low expectations at the beginning of the year, the county was carried on a tsunami of hope as the summer gathered pace and the Lilywhites marched to the Leinster final.’
      • ‘The momentum for this initiative has gathered pace following action by a group of French activists including anti-globalisation campaigner Jose Bove.’
      • ‘Large-scale student involvement in university by its very nature is difficult, due to the fast - paced lives student lead.’
    2. 2.2Cricket The state of a wicket as affecting the speed of the ball.
      ‘he can cope with the pace of the Australian wickets’
      • ‘He operated both round and over the wicket, varied pace and spin and generally looked a genuine spin bowler with an international career beckoning.’
      • ‘It was in South Africa last March that an unknown named Jimmy Anderson first made an impact, beating good batsmen on good wickets with sheer pace.’
      • ‘Despite the best efforts of groundsman Kenny Shepherd, the Arnside ground could not produce a wicket with pace.’
      • ‘The visitors who hail from Perth in Western Australia possibly found the lack of bounce and pace in the wicket a problem and folded up rather meekly.’
      • ‘Matt Forster and Cameron Robertson claimed a wicket each with their pace and Wayne Egglington picked one up with spin.’


  • 1no object, with adverbial of direction Walk at a steady speed, especially without a particular destination and as an expression of anxiety or annoyance.

    ‘we paced up and down in exasperation’
    • ‘she had been pacing the room’
    • ‘Emi asked as she tucked down the bill of the hat and began to pace around the room with an exaggerated boyish walk, her shoulders slumped with her hands in her pockets.’
    • ‘The elephant confined by a ten foot piece of chain can pace only a distance of ten feet, even after the chain has been removed.’
    • ‘She fretted pacing the small empty space of the mosaic floor, occasionally looking out of the window at the crowd on the front lawn.’
    • ‘Mr Leslie looked visibly nervous during the counts and paced up and down.’
    • ‘As the ship neared the island, the captain grew restless and so retreated to the main deck where he could pace out his anxiety.’
    • ‘When we got to his suite he began pacing around the living room, lecturing.’
    • ‘I waited up in my room, nervously pacing in my beautiful gown.’
    • ‘Yes I would have… I thought to myself as I walked and paced about the trees.’
    • ‘She paced and walked but never sat still to sing or tell Kyros and I of the news Kratos had let her listen in on.’
    • ‘So I kept walking the streets, pacing back and forth, back and forth again.’
    • ‘Flora was pacing around the room, an angry expression on her face.’
    • ‘Mouthing angry expletives, he stopped walking and paced in tight circles like a caged beast.’
    • ‘When Ben had looked in on him earlier Adam walked slowly, pacing, from one end of the room to the other, not willing for company.’
    • ‘He stood up and started to pace around the room with his fingers crossed behind his back.’
    • ‘Oscar began to pace, walking back and forth before sitting on a small wooden chair that was leaning against the wall.’
    • ‘Nancy walked out to the waiting room where Jordan was pacing.’
    • ‘To give them relief from their anxiety, Sitka paced to the door, stopping to tell the innkeeper he was going for a walk.’
    • ‘Brow furrowing, Shanza looked to the ground as they spent the rest of their walk pacing down the hallway in burdened but companionable silence.’
    • ‘Apparently, Lisa had walked in on Desiree pacing around the room.’
    • ‘She walked out, slowly pacing over to the sliding door in the living room and pushing the curtains aside.’
    walk, stride, tread, march, pound, patrol, walk up and down, walk back and forth, cross, traverse
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1with object Measure (a distance) by walking it and counting the number of steps taken.
      ‘I paced out the dimensions of my new home’
      • ‘But dancing even more so, as he confidently and smoothly paced out the measures of the waltz.’
      • ‘I watched an elderly woman pause halfway up one steep hill, pacing the distance that remained.’
      • ‘It got paced out pretty well, but I'm definitely still tipsy, if not still drunk.’
      • ‘Ready to vault, a serious faced youth, paced out his run, backed up again and then sprinted down the launch pad.’
      • ‘He first paced out the dimensions of the power station more than six years ago.’
      • ‘Idiots, they used this route every day, it was not enough to know the layout of the streets, they should have paced out the escape routes, that was what he always did.’
      • ‘After pacing the 100-metre length of the island, it becomes obvious why no one has applied for planning permission on Isay.’
      • ‘But watch for that paced, measured approach to keep rolling past Thursday June 7.’
      • ‘Anthak uncrossed his arms, then shook his head and smiled, before he approached from one side so he could pace out its walls.’
      • ‘You can also go out and pace the course if you want to - that's what caddies do - and many clubs provide the same information in printed guides.’
    2. 1.2no object (of a trained horse) move in a distinctive lateral gait in which both legs on the same side are lifted together.
      ‘he will suddenly pace for a few steps, then go back into normal walk’
      • ‘Altair shouted as he was thrown to the ground with a heavy thud, his horse pacing anxiously beside him.’
      • ‘He wasn't galloping yet, he was pacing, the gait in between a canter and a gallop, though not many horses can.’
      • ‘Luckily he had the use of the Royal Pacers; soldiers trained to pace precisely the same distance in each stride.’
      • ‘Harness racing, pacing and trotting, are raced by standard-bred horses as opposed to thoroughbreds, who do the galloping.’
  • 2with object and adverbial Move or develop (something) at a particular rate or speed.

    ‘the action is paced to the beat of a perky march’
    • ‘our fast-paced daily lives’
    • ‘New pacing technologies have been developed to treat heart failure, with promising results’
    • ‘This thing was the fastest moving, highest paced thing I had ever done.’
    • ‘We mainly use a short-rest, aerobic approach to develop pacing skills.’
    • ‘Love Letters is a languidly paced drama that has moving moments and fine performances, and is well made.’
    • ‘The story is well paced as it moves towards the renewed friendship between the two women.’
    • ‘She could not put in account of her own defense against what may happen when she reach downstairs, but her heart settled at the right beat just to pace her actions in a normal way.’
    • ‘Last month retail sales grew at their slowest pace this year as the impact of higher interest rates began to bite, according to the British Retail Consortium.’
    • ‘For a man who makes a career out of speed, Neil Hodgson slips effortlessly into the slow paced life of the Isle of Man.’
    • ‘His readings of the apposite quotations with which he argued his case were beautifully paced, theatrically rendered and always designed to move the listener as a true orator can.’
    • ‘It's fast, it's beautifully paced, and it's incredibly moving.’
    • ‘And a well prepared formal speech, each part paced out carefully in advance, is a very different thing to the spontaneities of ordinary speech.’
    • ‘Suddenly the sound vibrations began to get closer and were paced like walking.’
    • ‘It is a rapturous transcription of an evening in one woman's life, paced out almost in real time and mostly wordless.’
    • ‘Allowed to spend all the money he ever wanted, he delivers a film that is tightly paced, and with a story that functions well within its defined universe.’
    • ‘His leisurely paced Mozart allowed for all the notes to be heard and was well spatialized.’
    • ‘The six songs and six instrumentals of Angels Come on Time are well paced and carefully produced by the band themselves.’
    • ‘Reform has to be carefully paced so that society can absorb the changes and proceed forward with unity.’
    • ‘What's more, because they're fast paced and relatively short, the races themselves are exciting to watch.’
    • ‘On home ground, Janácek's Taras Bulba is finely paced, a perfect example of how Czech music should be performed.’
    • ‘I fear that both the first and second movements (marked accordingly) are paced a shade too slowly.’
    1. 2.1Lead (another runner in a race) in order to establish a competitive speed.
      ‘McKenna paced us for four miles’
      • ‘This close margin remained as the two leading boats paced each other through the middle of the race.’
      • ‘Giacomo Galanda paced Italy with 28 points while Carmelo Anthony led the Americans with 19 points.’
      • ‘The Slovenians and Poland moved out of the start in the lead and paced each other at the head of the field.’
      • ‘Gary Sheffield and newcomer Shawn Green have paced the club's strong offense.’
      • ‘They paced Roger Bannister while the doctor broke the four-minute barrier for the mile.’
      • ‘Ohio State has good ground depth and is paced by freshman Maurice Clarett, a rugged runner who gets stronger with each carry.’
      • ‘Given Guillen's history of injuries, the team wants to pace him.’
      • ‘Patrick Morin paced St Pierre scorers with a pair of goals.’
      • ‘The United States and Poland paced each other through the first half of the race before the US took the upper hand and moved closer to Canada.’
      • ‘When one runner paces another, it means the pace runner doesn't compete but accompanies the other runner to keep their spirits up.’
      • ‘In the final race of the evening, Bekele was paced by his brother Tariku to well within world record pace by the halfway point.’
      • ‘Russia and Belarus divided the field by pacing each other through the first half of the race.’
      • ‘France and South Africa paced each other throughout the race with France taking the upper edge at the line by less than half a second.’
      • ‘Last year Michael Skinner helped pace a World record in the two-mile race.’
      • ‘Heat two followed a similar pattern as Slovenia and Germany paced each other to a photo finish, Slovenia earning the advantage.’
      • ‘Jamie Langenbrunner paced New Jersey through its first two rounds, scoring seven goals.’
      • ‘She trains alongside local club rower, Jiri Mizera who paces her making every practice a mini competition.’
      • ‘Kupets said her coaches, Kelli Hill and Jen Bundy, are pacing her for the long summer schedule.’
      • ‘Co-head coaches Jill Sterkel and Michael Walker bring back a talented Texas team, paced by a trio of senior leaders.’
      • ‘Her husband had quit pacing her after 20 miles, leaving her to navigate the nighttime forest on her own.’
    2. 2.2pace oneselfDo something at a slow and steady rate in order to avoid overexertion.
      ‘Frank was pacing himself for the long night ahead’
      • ‘Still, remember to pace yourself to avoid fatigue.’
      • ‘I probably should have slowed down a little bit, paced myself.’
      • ‘I know you're supposed to start slow and work up so I am trying to pace myself.’
      • ‘As for the heart rate monitor, I generally use it to pace myself.’
      • ‘There's no one particular stage that frightens me, it's just that whole block of mountain stages in the Pyrenees - it's really going to be a case of pacing yourself because it's so tough.’
      • ‘They are better at pacing themselves and tend to knuckle down to the homework throughout the course.’
      • ‘Glenn, who lives in Speedwell Close, Haydon Wick, took part in a half marathon last month which taught him some valuable lessons about pacing himself.’
      • ‘She paces herself, keeps the reader in suspense.’
      • ‘I was intrigued by how one moved one's body to protect oneself, how one used a strategy both to attack and retreat, how one paced oneself over a match,’ he said.’
      • ‘So I paced myself, broke the job down into tasks, took a break between each of them, and was sitting outside the kitchen door enjoying the sun as they pulled up at the end of the drive.’


    at pace
    • Quickly.

      ‘the transformation of our business continues at pace’
      • ‘both sides play at pace and love to attack down the flanks’
    change of pace
    mainly North American
    • A change from what one is used to.

      ‘the magenta is a change of pace from traditional red’
      • ‘I don't often get invited out to speak on contracts, so for me it is a refreshing change of pace.’
      • ‘Shuffling off to Queens when you were expecting to spend a day in Manhattan is quite a change of pace.’
      • ‘I was impressed with the way she ran the class: the right mixture of speaking and listening, with changes of pace throughout.’
      • ‘Although she knew it was dangerous, Lichen couldn't help but be a little grateful for the change of pace.’
      • ‘With the summer quickly approaching, I'm sure many will be looking for a change of pace in their field of employment.’
      • ‘Going for a small change of pace, she used little peanut butter candies instead of chocolate chips.’
      • ‘With so many of us wanting to stay close to home now, why not attend one of the many home and garden shows in your area for a change of pace.’
      • ‘Getting a taste of watching Robby, rather than competing myself, was quite a change of pace.’
      • ‘I was off to rest camp in southern Italy for a week and a nice change of pace.’
      • ‘It's a nice change of pace from what we normally get at this time of the year.’
    keep pace with
    • Move or progress at the same speed or rate as.

      ‘fees have been raised to keep pace with inflation’
      • ‘Our raises are not keeping pace with inflation.’
      • ‘They say the law needs to keep pace with two big changes in the marketplace.’
      • ‘Lialah followed quickly, keeping pace with the old man, she had not said a word yet she would follow him to the dining hall.’
      • ‘However, the speed of implementation progress has not kept pace with recent years and with other countries.’
      • ‘She got out, still carrying her pack and followed him into the diner, her shorter legs moving almost at a run to keep pace with his long lazy strides.’
      • ‘Grant aid per student, though, has not kept pace with the rate of tuition increases.’
      • ‘Britain's biggest mortgage lender Halifax said the rate at which homes were being built had failed to keep pace with demand.’
      • ‘But that success will be threatened, unless we ensure that the pace of infrastructural development keeps pace with the growth in business activity.’
      • ‘Between 1870 and 1915 public and professional employment kept pace with the rate of population increase, but no more.’
      • ‘If your nest egg is significant, a portfolio growth rate that keeps pace with inflation may be sufficient.’
    last the pace
    mainly British
    • Be able to keep up with another or others.

      ‘a sprinter will never last the pace with a distance man’
      • ‘We were able to stay the pace, to meet them head-on in the tackle and to carry the ball to them.’
      • ‘But East had the extra commitment, fire and speed that helped them stay the pace, withstand the pressure and finally run out worthy winners.’
      • ‘I'm 33, and it's getting more and more difficult for my body to stay the pace.’
      • ‘All ages joined in on Saturday although rumour has it that some of the younger ones couldn't stand the pace.’
      • ‘Get the right job here and, providing you can stand the pace, you could soon be very rich indeed.’
      • ‘Cushnahan reckons he has stayed the pace, winning the seat three times with an increased vote on each occasion.’
      • ‘Never ones to quit, they stayed the pace even when colleagues wanted to go home.’
      • ‘There's no doubt the group will continue to produce challenging and provocative work - after all, they've managed to stand the pace pretty well, so far.’
      • ‘It is often useful for the prosecutor to find out whether the prosecution witnesses can stand the pace of a High Court hearing or a District Court jury trial hearing.’
      • ‘They look tough and strong and possess abundant stamina to stand the pace.’
    off the pace
    • Behind the leader or leading group in a race or contest.

      ‘Duncan was two seconds off the pace’
      • ‘he was well off the pace when it came to team politics’
      • ‘It's these inconsistencies that have left them way off the pace in the championship race.’
      • ‘That was a creditable nine seconds off the pace of early leader Markko Martin.’
      • ‘But in the second half they fell off the pace and the South Africans finished with a flourish.’
      • ‘Lenny Beasley aboard Mr Celebrity was content to race off the pace in fifth, one off the rail.’
      • ‘But at the moment, if you are three seconds off the pace we cannot win races.’
      • ‘The long-time leader fell off the pace after jumping the last level with Florida Pearl and Alexander Banquet.’
      • ‘Merrits who was heading for a third win in a row, pressured the leader but dropped off the pace on the turn.’
      • ‘It's all about conditioning and again, they were clearly off the pace, yards behind us.’
      • ‘In Monte Carlo, during the race, some cars were four seconds, five seconds off the pace.’
      • ‘They are still in the Champions League but once again find themselves more than 20 points off the pace in the premiership.’
    put someone or something through their paces
    • Make someone or something demonstrate their abilities.

      ‘military musicians put would-be bandsmen through their paces’
      • ‘At Plymouth she will be put through her paces on her ability to berth and secure to a buoy, along with her storing facilities.’
      • ‘This is sure to attract a lot of attention both from entrants and spectators who can watch the dogs being led around their enclosure where they will be put through their paces and obedience tests.’
      • ‘It's not uncommon to see executives and engineers helicopter prototypes down to the trail, where a test driver puts the new vehicle through its paces.’
      • ‘Three regional winners will go forward to a Grand Final on July 9th where they will be judged by an expert panel of children who plan to put them through their paces in a practical road-crossing test!’
      • ‘On Sunday, scores of would-be Annies, Mollys, Peppers and Duffys were put through their paces at St Martin's Primary School, after the society switched audition venues to accommodate the huge numbers.’
      • ‘I for one am looking forward to receiving a sample and putting it through its paces.’
      • ‘‘Having put the finished product through its paces by rigorously testing it, we have confirmed that it is more accurate than any other such program in the past,’ according to Prof Easton.’
      • ‘Nothing is really tested until it has been put through its paces out in the real world and I cheerfully ignore any tests I read about!’
      • ‘The officers will be trained by the city council's road safety team with training supervisor Mieke Jackson putting them through their paces.’
      • ‘For five days last week they were put through their paces by the coaches and picked up a lot of tips and skills that will no doubt improve their game.’
    set the pace
    • 1Be the fastest runner in the early part of a race.

      ‘Nolan set the pace over the cross-country course’
      • ‘But it was Van den Hoogenband, the oldest man in the race, who set the pace, pulling a few inches ahead of the Australian as they neared the end of the first 50 metres and touching in 24.44sec.’
      • ‘The winner set the pace while racing a bit off the rail early, then was moved inside in the final turn.’
      • ‘In the women's race, first-leg runner Eyerusalem Kuma set the pace for the Ethiopians, who cruised to victory in 2: 11: 54.’
      • ‘But it's a new day with North Carolina A&T State University's race team setting the pace as a history-making program.’
      • ‘Banjo Picker earned his second stakes win after setting the pace in the six-furlong race for three-year-olds and older.’
      • ‘Liven On a Prayer set the pace in the six-furlong race and opened a 1 1/2-length lead in early stretch.’
      • ‘The 31-year-old set the pace throughout the race and finished strongly to cross the line in two hours 08.31 minutes, a new championship record time.’
      • ‘Racing at Pioneer Park on Saturday was tailored for the front runners, when in all four races the horse that set the pace prevailed.’
      • ‘We go jogging at 5.15 am and he leads the way and sets the pace.’
      • ‘Patty, who has already conquered the New York Marathon, set the pace and led from start to finish, as usual.’
      1. 1.1Lead the way in doing something.
        ‘space movies have set the pace for the development of special effects’
        • ‘The group repeats a chorus or claps while a lead singer or drummer sets the pace.’
        • ‘Hong Kong action movies have been setting the pace for the rest of the world for more than a decade.’
        • ‘Why should we let a man who has never led a strike in his life set the pace of our dispute?’
        • ‘Councillors should be setting the pace on behalf of the people.’
        • ‘Paisley boy and upcoming talent Paolo Nutini strutted on to the main stage at 1.30 pm yesterday to rapturous applause, exuding a confidence far exceeding his 19 years, setting the pace and tone for the line-up to follow.’
        • ‘About 750,000 people smoke in Greater Manchester and we are setting the pace by doing something about it.’
        • ‘In the early days of FM radio, the AM dial was still setting the pace, so FM was a place where it didn't matter much what you played or how you filled your timeslot.’
        • ‘Mr Fuller is one of only two farmers in the UK to be selected to receive an award this year, which recognises those who are setting the pace in modern agriculture.’
        • ‘The Tampa Bay area's biggest public companies are setting the pace for recovery in a strengthening economy.’
        • ‘That rate sets the pace for many consumer loans, especially the prime rate, at most retail banks.’


Middle English from Old French pas, from Latin passus ‘stretch (of the leg)’, from pandere ‘to stretch’.

Main meanings of pace in English

: pace1pace2PACE3


See synonyms for pace

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  • With due respect to (someone or their opinion), used to express polite disagreement or contradiction.

    ‘narrative history, pace some theorists, is by no means dead’
    • ‘Legislation development services, pace my learned friend's submissions, clearly can include some forms of advertising.’
    • ‘And none of these - pace your earlier comments - have gimps, do they?’



/ˈpɑːtʃeɪ/ /ˈpeɪsi/


Latin, literally ‘in peace’, ablative of pax, as in pace tua ‘by your leave’.

Main meanings of PACE in English

: pace1pace2PACE3


Pronunciation /peɪs/

See synonyms for PACE

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  • Police and Criminal Evidence Act.